By Gary Truitt, Hoosier Ag Today.
The Senate GOP leadership calls the energy bill that the Energy Committee passed with a bipartisan 18-4 vote last July “a leading contender” for floor debate early this year. Energy Committee Chair Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, is eager to lead that debate, hoping for Senate passage by March. If the Senate passes the Murkowski/Cantwell Energy Policy Modernization Act, S. 2012, the next step will be a House/Senate conference to merge that bill with the North American Energy Security and Infrastructure Act, H.R. 8, which the House passed Dec. 3 in a 249-174 vote.
But prospects for finalizing an energy bill this year face four major hurdles: